CHAIRMAN’S STATEMENT

Once more we approach our Reunion with it’s opportunity to meet old friends.    We reflect about the past and review our memories.  We discuss and compare our current lives.  We talk about our plans and hopes for the future.   In this brief comment I wish to discuss the future of your AOSA Committee and the management of those tasks for which it exists to carry out.

The Committee has various tasks, some prominent, some more in the background but no less important.  Very visible is the Annual Reunion itself with considerations about venue, menu and costings.  Our magazine has to be compiled, set-up, printing costs compared, printed and then distributed to all members.  This is inextricably linked to membership and the task of keeping up to date with the living, (and sadly), those who have departed during the preceding 12 months.  Again membership links to stewardship of members’ fees and how funds are invested.  We are, by the way, healthy financially.  We have a website.  It is not static but organic. There is a world-wide network of districts keeping membership details up to date and feeding in news and information.

Yes, I know I have been stating the obvious, however, this is deliberate as there is a proverbial “fly in the ointment”.  Your Committee considers it’s average age to be too high.  We very much wish younger, and we do mean younger, old scholars would come forward to staff the Committee and so ensure our Association continues to thrive into the future.

This leads naturally to generational considerations. The world is changing rapidly and much of this change arises from information technology, the ways we now communicate and the way we act as and in groups.  We display our lives on Facebook. Our thoughts and opinions are flashed across the world instantaneously using Twitter.  We talk face to face in real time using Skype.  We can read our newspapers on the Net and our books on Kindl.  Your Committee already has used Skype to incorporate a committee member in North America into a committee meeting as it sat.  Group conferencing by Skype already is a reality in commerce and industry.

Should the Association be doing things differently?  Are we keeping up to date?  We believe we need fresh young minds to carry us forward, to lead AOSA into this rapidly changing world without it’s rich heritage being lost.  I ask our younger members to consider what you could bring to the Committee.  If you have the interest to attend three meetings annually in October, March and at Reunion time then bring your name forward to any existing committee member.  We have a number of members due to retire this year.  SThe term of service usually is three years with the option to undertake further terms.

It will be tremendous and heartening if, at our AGM in June, we can announce the wish of a number of old scholars to join the Committee and help steer AOSA.